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Hi everyone,

If my brother and I have a car together, do you say My brother's and my car is red?

Thank you very much for your help!

[EDIT: I've realized my question might not be so clear. Is My brother's and my car the right way to make a possessive out of My brother and I have a car; one that can then be used as a subject, as in My brother's and my car is red? I hope this is clearer.]

H.
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I'd say that yours is the "right" way to do it, but there is no good way. I would always recast to avoid the problem: Our car is red, my brother and I. People try all sorts of things when they have to say something like that in speech. Most common might be, "My brother and I's car is red", letting the compound subject take the possessive as a unit, but that is too ugly to write. English doesn't handle this well.
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Thank you for your answer enoon.
All the alternatives do seem a little awkward, as you say.
I'm intrigued by Our car is red, my brother and I. Can I avoid possessivness by extraposing my brother and I?
Yes, that is sort of rethorical, seeing as you just did that. What I mean by that is: I don't understand its grammaticality. Shouldn't it be Our car is red, my brother and I's or ...my brother's and mine?

Thank you for your help.
H.
Henry74Thank you for your answer enoon.All the alternatives do seem a little awkward, as you say.I'm intrigued by Our car is red, my brother and I. Can I avoid possessivness by extraposing my brother and I?Yes, that is sort of rethorical, seeing as you just did that. What I mean by that is: I don't understand its grammaticality. Shouldn't it be Our car is red, my brother and I's or ...my brother's and mine?Thank you for your help.H.
Giving things grammary names doesn't get us anywhere. English grammar is an attempt to explain why we put things the way we do, ultimately doomed to failure, not a way of deciding how to put things. No, the possessive is unidiomatic after "our car is red". I guess you can think of "my brother and I" as a phantom-subject zero-case parenthetical post-antecedent ( I made that term up just now) for "our". I'm sure somebody here knows exactly what to call it in some system of analysis.
Great question, Henry.

The rule is very clear:

Tom's and Mona's cars are red. (Tom has a car; Mona has a car.) (Two apostrophes)

Tom and Mona's  car is red. (Joint possession / ownership) (One apostrophe)

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BUT there is  an exception for personal pronouns.  According to The Handbook of Good English by Edward D. Johnson (I found it in the books section of Google), if there is a personal  pronoun in the possessive case (such as "my")   then everything takes an apostrophe.  His examples:

This is John's and my car.
This is my sister's, my cousin's, and my room.

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Therefore, you are 100% correct: This is my brother's and my car.
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Thank you, James. I'm glad to hear that! Emotion: smile

H.